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  • Writer's pictureHannah R. Palmer Author

Broken Wings and Buried Secrets: The creepy short story collection you should be reading.

Bethany Votaw's latest short story collection, Broken Wings and Buried Secrets, is out now. The third of Votaw's books, this collection is creepy, dark and often asks the reader to ask uncomfortable questions of themselves. It's everything you'd expect from a Bethany Votaw collection, and more.

The summary you get on Amazon is short and sweet, but to the point.

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This short story collection offers a glimpse into some of the mind's darkest and strangest corners. It features the lies we tell ourselves, the truths we pretend to face, the pain we inflict on our family, and the shadows we try to outrun.

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A portrait shot of Bethany Votaw in a wide rimmed black hat

Tell us a little about yourself

Hi! My name is Bethany Votaw and I started writing short stories in college to pass the time. Some magazines and anthologies liked them so I never stopped writing them. I now write mystery/thrillers too! I currently live in southern California with my husband and dog.

What’s your favourite thing to write about?

Favourite thing to write about? I love a good undertone of complexity. I really enjoy making people feel something, and that's usually going to mean I have to use something real and raw that most people can relate to in some capacity. I also think writing from a child's perspective can be so fun (and creepy) just because of how they can view the world.

What’s the main inspiration behind Broken Wings and Buried Secrets?

Main inspiration behind Broken Wings? People. I think this collection features family secrets and pasts and a lot of that was inspired by my real life in watching my parents and in-laws care for their aging parents. I recently lost my grandfather, who I was very close to, and watching how people tackled grief and unsaid feelings was... interesting, but at least I got some inspiration out of that (my grandpa would approve haha)!

What’s your main source of inspiration?

My main source of inspiration? People and being outside. People are so complex, and just listening to their stories, how they view the world, and what they feel their role in it can be has been the backbone of several stories. But I can't leave out the power of nature. Going on walks and enjoying the outdoors is what gets my mind settled and organised, and some very fun places have been the catalyst to certain stories, creating that setting to hold a story together.

If you could compare Broken Wings & Buried Secrets to another collection, or a novel, what would you compare it to?

Hmmmmmm This is a hard question! I would say loosely it ties in with my other collection, Scribbles and Scrawls, but I think another comparable would be Yoko Ogawa's "The Diving Pool". Granted, I am nowhere near as talented, but that collection brings up the horrors lurking beneath the surface, and I think I tried to do something similar with my collection.

A hand holding Broken Wings and Buried Secrets, with a backdrop of the sea

Broken Wings and Buried Secrets is out now across all platforms, including Amazon. If you're after something subtly creepy brimming with family dynamics and multidimensional characters, this is the collection for you.

My personal favourite is probably Clam Chowder or Buttons, but honestly this is a collection that I'll revisit time and again!

The front cover of Bethany's first collection, Scribbles and Scrawls

New to Bethany Votaw? Be sure to check out her other collection, Scribbles and Scrawls, as well as her debut thriller novella Tracker.

Find Bethany over on Instagram and sign up to her newsletter to be the first to hear about upcoming releases.

A banner image of One Road In, Hannah R Palmer's latest thriller.

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